Barry Lopez, author of Arctic Dreams, for which he received a National Book Award, is one of the nation's premiere nature writers. Among his other non-fiction books are About This Life, and Of Wolves and Men, which was a National Book Award finalist. He also has authored several award-winning works of fiction, including Field Notes, Winter Count, and a novella-length fable, Crow and Weasel. Once a landscape photographer, Lopez turned to writing as a means of exploring the relationships between humans and nature. In fact, many of his stories approach a single, fundamental question: How close can one and should one get to nature? He has collaborated with writers, artists and composers on a variety of projects, and he recently worked with E.O. Wilson, a Harvard entomologist, to design a university curriculum that combines the sciences and the humanities in a new undergraduate major.
Lopez has received numerous awards and prizes, among them the Literature Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the John Burroughs Medal, Guggenheim, National Science Foundation, and Lannan Fellowships, the John Hay Award for 2001, and Pushcart Prizes in fiction and non-fiction. He is a regular contributor to Harper's, The Paris Review, Esquire, Orion and The Georgia Review.
Richard Nelson is a cultural anthropologist and naturalist who lives and works in rural Alaska. He has written numerous books and articles about the animals of the Arctic, and in so doing, has illuminated a great deal about the people who thrill to see, study and hunt these creatures.
He has studied connections between people and nature in Alaskan Eskimo and Athabaskan Indian villages. Based on these experiences, he wrote Hunters of the Northern Ice, Hunters of the Northern Forest, Shadow of the Hunter, and Make Prayers to the Raven.
Nelson's work also has appeared in Life, Harpers, Outside and The Los Angeles Times.
He holds a B.S. and an M.S. in anthropology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and a Ph.D. in Anthro-pology from the University of California-Santa Barbara.
His latest book, Heart and Blood: Living with Deer in America, explores the complex and often controversial relationships between people and deer. It received the Sigurd Olson Nature Writing Award. In 1999 Nelson was honored as Alaska's State Writer. He is an avid outdoorsman and a volunteer conservation activist.
Ian Stirling, recognized as one of the world's leading experts on polar bears and
walruses, is senior research scientist at the Canadian Wildlife Service and adjunct professor of zoology at the University of Alberta.
For almost 30 years, he has been studying the lifestyles and habitat of these animals in the Arctic. His work contributes to the development
of field management plans that help people in arctic regions to manage and conserve animal populations. His work also helps determine sustainable levels of harvest, what food and habitat areas animals prefer, and the best ways to protect animal groups without compromising traditional activities.
He is well known for his research on polar bear ecology, particularly his studies on polar bear behavior, population parameters and distribution. He is author of Polar Bears, which was hailed by Canadian Geographic magazine as an exciting and varied story with an abundance of scientific and anecdotal evidence about Inuit life.
Stirling holds a B.Sc. and an M.Sc. from the University of British Columbia, and a Ph.D. from the University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand.
Susan A. Kaplan, an associate professor of anthropology and director of The Peary-MacMillan Arctic Museum and Arctic Studies Center at Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, specializes in anthropology and archaeology of the North American Eastern Arctic, particularly Labrador. She works in an interdisciplinary context to examine how
paleoenvironmental and historical factors affect Inuit culture, conducts research on ethnohistoric photographs and films of the Arctic, and researches the history of exploration in the eastern Arctic. For more information about her recent work, visit her site at Bowdoin. Kaplan holds a B.A. from Lake Forest College and an M.A. and a Ph.D. from Bryn Mawr College.
The Brown Symposium at Southwestern University
The Brown Symposium is presented by Southwestern University on an annual basis. Open to the public without charge, the symposium is funded through an endowment established by The Brown Foundation, Inc., of Houston, Texas, for professorships at the University.
The symposia are designed to enhance the effectiveness
of the work for which the endowed professorships were established. Each symposium presents topics in one of
the broad areas of study represented by the chairholder.
Arctic Journey: Discoveries of inter-relationships in the
circumpolar north was developed by Stephanie Fabritius, professor of biology, associate provost and director of the Paideia Program; holder of the Lillian Nelson Pratt Chair.
Lecture events are held in the Alma Thomas Theater, located in the Alma Thomas Fine Arts Center. An alumni reception will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 12 in the Julie Puett Howry Center.